Amber Heard Admits She Still “Has Love” For Johnny Depp in First Post-Trial Interview
Guthrie referenced another selection from the transcripts in which she said Heard was “taunting” Depp by saying, “Tell the world, Johnny Depp, ‘I, a man, am a victim of domestic violence.’” Heard responded that an isolated segment like that lacked sufficient context and was “not representative of even the two hours or the three hours that those clips are [excerpted] from.”
“The First Amendment doesn’t protect lies that amount to defamation and that was the issue in the case,” Guthrie said, putting the focus on the defamation aspect of the trial, and whether Heard was telling the truth.
“To my dying day, I will stand by every word of my testimony,” Heard said. “I’ve made a lot of mistakes. A lot of mistakes. But I’ve always told the truth.”
The “perfect victim” fallacy was addressed.
Much coverage of the trial has hinged on the notion of the “perfect victim”— the idea that an accuser must meet strict social standards in order for their claims to be taken seriously. In the interview, Heard acknowledged negative perceptions of her played a role in not only social media discourse around the trial, but also the strategy of Depp’s legal team.
“I’m not a good victim, I get it,” she said. “I’m not a likable victim, I’m not a perfect victim. But when I testified I asked the jury to see me and hear his own words, which is a promise to do this,” Heard told TODAY. In an interview with TIME, civil rights attorney Alexandra Brodsky said “They discredited Heard based on conduct that had nothing to do with whether she was abused or not,” she said.
Heard was criticized for her behavior while giving testimony (one of Depp’s lawyers derisively said she gave “the performance of a lifetime” on the stand), as well as in her past, including a 2009 incident with another ex, Tasya Van Ree, which Heard alleged had been planted in the media by Depp’s team. (Van Ree defended Heard and said she was “wrongfully accused for an incident that was misinterpreted and over-sensationalized…” in a 2016 statement.)
Depp’s legal team posited that Heard had actually been the aggressor against her then-husband, and while Heard did acknowledge that she had been physical with Depp, she said she only did so after he initiated. “I never had to instigate it. I responded to it. When you’re living in violence and it becomes normal, as I testified to, you have to adapt,” she said.
Heard says she still “has love” and “no ill will” for Depp, and no animosity towards the jury.
In one widely-shared portion of the interview, Heard expressed a certain amount of sympathy for her ex-husband. Guthrie referenced a statement Heard had made at the beginning of the trial saying she “still [had] love for Johnny,” and asked whether she still felt that way.
“I love him. I loved him with all my heart and I tried the best I could to make a deeply broken relationship work and I couldn’t. I have no bad feelings or ill will towards him at all,” she told Guthrie. Heard also theorized that many people who have been in love could relate to that enduring feeling, despite the obviously problematic turn their relationship took. She stressed that she did not want to see Depp “canceled,” and that was part of the impetus for not referencing him directly in the op-ed piece that the lawsuit hinged on.
Heard was also asked how she felt about the jury, and said that she did not blame them for the trial’s outcome, though she continued to imply that their verdict was affected by external forces. “I actually understand. He’s a beloved character and people feel they know him,” she said.